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Sleeping pilot

Old 30th May 2022, 19:21
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Only saw the first few lines of the story due the subscription but sacking him seems very harsh, assume there's more to this.

I'm back in my own bed every night, as are my colleagues. It is not unheard of for ATCOs to fall asleep in the seat either. Shift work is tough, we all have lives outside of work that intrude from time to time. I hope he is in a Union and this isn't the end of the matter for him.
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Old 30th May 2022, 22:12
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Hmmmm

Originally Posted by kenparry View Post
In the days before JAA, when Italy ran FTL under its own national rules, they could (and did) roster Rome to New York and return within a single duty period - and, I think, with only a 2-pilot crew.
Surely not?? Where do you have proof of this?
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Old 31st May 2022, 01:31
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Heard a very reliable story from directly from fellow commuter pilots dozed off and were actually intercepted in late 1990s. Prior to TOD and nothing really happened to them. However if a flight even scraped by P-56 in broad daylight they were sure to get a visit from Secret Service!
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Old 31st May 2022, 03:53
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On trains you have a dead man's handle that stops the train if the driver doesn't respond. While stopping a plane is not possible (unless its fitted with the new emergency divert/land system), surely its not beyond the bounds of possibility that something to wake the crew could be installed on the flight deck to generate an alarm if it is not responded to?
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Old 31st May 2022, 04:07
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Originally Posted by HowardB View Post
On trains you have a dead man's handle that stops the train if the driver doesn't respond. While stopping a plane is not possible (unless its fitted with the new emergency divert/land system), surely its not beyond the bounds of possibility that something to wake the crew could be installed on the flight deck to generate an alarm if it is not responded to?
It is called a "cell phone" or "mobile". you set the timer to 20 minutes and voila......
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Old 31st May 2022, 05:23
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Originally Posted by oceancrosser View Post
I would really like to see a list of airlines that assign more pilots to flights than absolutely required, either by authorities or contracts…
Speaking to friends at American, Delta, United, Atlas and Kalitta, they all operate flights that carry extra pilots. Obviously not every flight, but on some flights the airlines accept that legal doesn’t mean safe.
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Old 31st May 2022, 07:05
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Originally Posted by HowardB View Post
On trains you have a dead man's handle that stops the train if the driver doesn't respond. While stopping a plane is not possible (unless its fitted with the new emergency divert/land system), surely its not beyond the bounds of possibility that something to wake the crew could be installed on the flight deck to generate an alarm if it is not responded to?
They exist....some types have a function as part of the general warning system that monitors the the interval between crew input to several systems on the flight deck.

If there was nil crew activity for too long (defined period, varied on phase of flight) it gave the crew a quiet nudge (e.g. EICAS message "Crew Response"), If that didn't trigger a button push from the crew then it escalates to a very noisy warning.
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Old 31st May 2022, 07:07
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Originally Posted by Check Airman View Post
Speaking to friends at American, Delta, United, Atlas and Kalitta, they all operate flights that carry extra pilots. Obviously not every flight, but on some flights the airlines accept that legal doesn’t mean safe.
I think many of us who did Long Haul from the European side of the pond were very envious of the fact that it appeared as if the US operators stuck a third pilot on if the flight was oceanic in any way shape or form, and this requirement was down to Union agreements, rather then any benevolence on the part of the airlines..

Can anyone State side confirm or deny?
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Old 31st May 2022, 07:52
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My wife, who was a stewardess before I married her, went onto the flight deck of a Britannia in the middle of the night to find all four crew members fast asleep. She decided that this was not a good idea in mid-Atlantic, so went up behing the captain and said, 'Boo!' in a very loud voice. He was most unamused but it had the right effect.
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Old 31st May 2022, 08:24
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I operated in Italy in the early 90's when three crew (a captain and two first officers) plus two serviceable FMC's constituted a "double crew". This allowed a flight time limitation of 24 hours which could be extended by half of any time spend on the ground. There were no limitations on the number of sectors flown and my worst day involved 11 flights and a duty period of 26 hours! Absolutely crazy but totally legal at that time.
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Old 31st May 2022, 08:51
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Sizeable country with FAA Caterogory 1 rating. Until this year, FTL was allowing for 24 hours duty period with two pilots, number of sectors not limited.
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Old 31st May 2022, 09:01
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Originally Posted by Youmightsaythat View Post
Someone should have warned the aviation establishment about fatigued pilots #ohholdon.I did.
I can' say to much because the contents of book two and three in the series Pulling Wings From Butterflies were presented to the police who are currently investigating the failures of the airlines and regulators to deal with fatigue issues.

Its the story of the aviation establishment don't want told, pilots and cabin crew are afraid to tell but passengers need to know.
So why is it pilots are complicit in this fatigue issue?

The following is taken from Book two;

“Ask yourself the following question. Would you make a stand in the interests of passenger and crew safety if you knew it would likely risk your career and position that you had spent decades and tens of thousands of pounds building? A career which, at least for the first few years, meant having no money and required two jobs to survive? Would you risk your family’s financial future and the probability that you could no longer service your financial commitments? Would you risk having your good name and reputation trashed, marked as “difficult”, labelled “dishonest” and have your “integrity” challenged by the industry establishment, all for doing the right thing?
If you concluded that no, you would not take a stand because of the enormous personal ramifications, don’t feel too bad. If you are reading this book sitting on an aircraft as a passenger, it will therefore come as no surprise that the two pilots currently sitting a few feet away from you in the cockpit will have quite likely come to the same conclusion, on more than one occasion. It’s not worth the personal upheaval to do the right thing. It’s just not worth upsetting management. Now, sit back, relax and enjoy your flight”


Excerpt "Pulling Wings from Butterflies - Tercio de Banderillas"

B I N G O !!!

Fatigue is a REAL CONTINUOUS problem in today’s aviation…
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Old 31st May 2022, 11:10
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Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
I think many of us who did Long Haul from the European side of the pond were very envious of the fact that it appeared as if the US operators stuck a third pilot on if the flight was oceanic in any way shape or form, and this requirement was down to Union agreements, rather then any benevolence on the part of the airlines..

Can anyone State side confirm or deny?
Delta’s pilot contract requires a third pilot on any flight over 8 hours and a two Captains and two FO’s over 12 hours. As a rule the airline normally staffs most Atlantic flights with 3 pilots even under 8 hours to help reliability. US FAR’s on the return leg from Europe can specify a maximum total duty time as low as 9 hours for a 2-man crew. Any delays would force a cancelation without the third pilot. In addition you can’t call the crew at the Hotel and delay the pickup. Duty day starts at scheduled pickup unless you get about 10 hours prior notification.
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Old 31st May 2022, 11:16
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Originally Posted by Sailvi767 View Post
Delta’s pilot contract requires a third pilot on any flight over 8 hours and a two Captains and two FO’s over 12 hours. As a rule the airline normally staffs most Atlantic flights with 3 pilots even under 8 hours to help reliability. US FAR’s on the return leg from Europe can specify a maximum total duty time as low as 9 hours for a 2-man crew. Any delays would force a cancelation without the third pilot. In addition you can’t call the crew at the Hotel and delay the pickup. Duty day starts at scheduled pickup unless you get about 10 hours prior notification.
Seems like a safe , fair and profitable system . The industry outside of the states seems to be still in the race to the bottom , maybe in 10-20 years we will catch up when pendulum swings back ? I’ll be long gone but next gen might be lucky ?
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Old 31st May 2022, 12:08
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Many thanks Sailvi767
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Old 31st May 2022, 12:10
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Originally Posted by Sailvi767 View Post
The US rules require a third pilot. NYC to Rome is not a short flight and controlled rest is basically a joke. To many things can interrupt such a rest and a cockpit seat is never great for sleep.
Lol, I never had any trouble sleeping, especially over the South Atlantic. One night, destination, Campinis, the load master came up front and found the 3 of us ALL sound asleep. He soon woke us up. That was after a long duty period.

I encouraged "controlled rest" if someone let me know they would like to "put their head down" for half an hour or so. That was during the time it was strongly discouraged by the authorities. My argument for it was this. It is better to have a crockpit crew member rested, rather than 2 or 3 cockpit crew members exhausted battling to stay awake for hours on end. No condition to act in an emergency. Nice to have at least one crew member "rested". IMHO.
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Old 31st May 2022, 12:39
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It certainly isn’t benevolence, but the airlines simply accept that some tight scheduling practices simply aren’t safe, so some flights get a 3rd pilot.

Take a round trip from NY to the Caribbean- it may just be doable with 2 pilots, but why risk the crew going fatigued down route and then having to cancel the northbound flight, when you can put a relief pilot on board, and operate more reliably?

My airline recently started service to a Caribbean destination a few times a week, where the schedule had a crew deadhead outbound, then operate the leg back home. After having significant delays when the first few crews were too tired to fly back, it’s now scheduled as a 48hr layover.
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Old 1st Jun 2022, 00:42
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Any 24 hour layover will probably leave you hanging in the straps - you cannot control your sleep patterns by drawing the curtains and sticking earplugs in.
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Old 1st Jun 2022, 02:14
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Originally Posted by blimey View Post
Any 24 hour layover will probably leave you hanging in the straps - you cannot control your sleep patterns by drawing the curtains and sticking earplugs in.
Airlines here don't get that. They're fond of giving us 30 hr layovers where you fly until midnight on the first day, and then leave at 6am on the third day. The long layover looks great on paper though.
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Old 1st Jun 2022, 07:03
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Originally Posted by blimey View Post
Any 24 hour layover will probably leave you hanging in the straps - you cannot control your sleep patterns by drawing the curtains and sticking earplugs in.
It all depends.

I am about to start a europe-US east coast flight, 8hrs flighttime (back slightly less).

Reporting 11.50lt, finished at midnight homebase time. About 21hrs rest before flying back and to be honest, that works better for me than tagging another day onto the restperiod.

The second night I always sleep less well than the first and I feel more rested when flying back after only 1 night at destination.
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